While attempting to install SQL Server 2005 you may encounter an error familiar to the following and a retry option presented by setup.
Faulting application sqlservr.exe, version 2005.90.1399.0, time stamp 0x434f82e9, faulting module sqlservr.exe, version 2005.90.1399.0, time stamp 0x434f82e9, exception code 0xc0000005, fault offset 0x01019027, process id 0xe70, application start time 0x01c8d28679b262eb.
There are a few known issues; all corrected if you install SQL Server 2005 SP2, but getting Service Pack 2 installed makes this a chicken and egg scenario. Here a references knowledge base references.
KB 954835 - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/954835/en-us (This article currently states that you should use a CPU value that is a power of 2. This is only partially correct and comments to the KB have been submitted.)
KB 931666 - http://support.microsoft.com/kb/931666/en-us Systems with 9, 17, 18, 19, 33, 34, 35, 36,37,38,39 encounter the issue
COMMON WORKAROUND STEPS
1. KB 954835 describes how to use the BOOT.INI or MSCONFIG.exe to set the NumProc boot option. Set this to 1 and not a power of 2 to avoid the vast majority of the scenarios.
2. Install SQL Server and SQL Server Service Pack 2 with the computer configured to look like a single CPU system.
ALTERNATE WORKAROUND STEPS
There are a few conditions where the common workaround is not sufficient.
1. At the time you get the failure to start SQL Sevrver during setup you are presented with a retry option.
At this time replace the SQLSERVR.exe and SQLOS.dll into the BINN folder at your install location from an Service Pack 2 installation and then Retry. This allows the SQL Server to start and complete the setup. YOU ARE NOW IN A PRODUCTION UNSUPPORTTED SITUATION.
2. Immediately apply SQL Server SP2 and you are back in a supported configuration.
Reference: Triple Core, 3-Core, Tri-Core, Intel, AMD Phenom
SQL Server Senior Escalation Engineer